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October 31 2015

(Halloween Costumes if you so choose)

Hope you'll join us, at Wells Hall. Singles, couples, first-timers, and experienced dancers; All are Welcome. No partner needed; Alcohol and smoke-free; Workshop for newcomers (see below.) We have a great time, dancers, caller, and musicians too! Sponsored by the Seattle Folklore Society.

LAURA ME' SMITH will teach and call the dances. She is well known at dances throughout the region, and has her own regular monthly series on Second Saturdays in Kirkland. Those of you with long memories may recall that she was the original founding caller of the Fifth Saturday series. She is a sweet and gracious caller known for the connection she makes with the dancers, as well as for the interesting and varied dances she chooses to present. A real treat to dance to.

Contra tunes will be provided by JESSE PARTRIDGE on fiddle, JAY FINKELSTEIN on guitar, and PHIL KATZ on melodeons. Jesse and Jay, by themselves, are the excellent Olympia-based band "Cobbler" and form the core of Olympia's "Contra Quartet". Jesse leads the "Olympia Volunteer Orchestra", a big band that assembles annually to play for a dance in Spring and for a set at NW Folklife. My playing goes back to the initial Saturday contradance series in Puget Sound (the Salmonberry 2nd Saturday dance begun in Seattle's University Friends' Meeting House in 1980) and more recently has included the bands "Grey Owl" and "Fresh Cider" where Jay played guitar. In 2013, after dancing to Jay and Jesse in their various Olympia configurations, I thought it would be a fine idea to combine talents and repertoires and play a dance together. It was pretty exciting for us and the dancers, so we thought we'd do it again.

As always, at Fifth Saturdays we will be playing "close to the dance and the dancers", choosing our tunes to match the dance chosen by the caller, and our styling to support the dancers as each dance evolves. As it turns out, Jay and now Jesse also call dances, and all three members of the October 31 band have experience "quarterbacking" - picking the tune sets for the dances while the caller teaches the dance, so that process should be a lot of fun. And it is always a pleasure to play for our friends out on the dance floor.

Specifics on the Event

The Fifth Saturday Contra Dance will be held at Christ Church Wells Hall, 310 North K Street, Tacoma - directions below. It is well-known as one of the sweetest halls in Puget Sound. (Note: It's the same location as the Tacoma Contra Dance that's held on Third Saturdays.)

The dance will run from 8:00 - 11:00 pm. The cost is $9.00, with a $2.00 discount for 18 down and 65 up. As always, a 10% discount will be available to Seattle Folklore Society members who request it.

There will be a newcomers' intro-lesson at 7:30 pm. Contra dancing is "not rocket science", and by the third dance, anyone looking out over the crowd will likely be unable to tell who just learned that evening! We are proud of the tradition of asking newcomers and visitors to dance, and looking after them on the dance floor. (Experienced dancers often bring friends they've been wanting to introduce to contra dancing, and help out by dancing in the mini-lesson.)

Directions to Wells Hall   

310 North "K" Street, Tacoma

From Seattle, "Eastside" of Lake Washington, or Des Moines

I-5 south to exit 133 (Tacoma City Center). Then take I-705 and the Schuster Parkway exit on the right (still called I-705). From there again stay right and take the Stadium Way (first) exit from Schuster Pkwy. At the top of the exit ramp, turn right. The street goes up hill. Follow it til it ends, then swing left onto North 1st. You pass Stadium Thriftway and a Chevrolet lot, and then merge into Division at a traffic light. Continue on Division, turn right onto North "K". Wells Hall is the second building on the left. Enter the dance through the church courtyard.

From Olympia

Take Interstate 5 to Tacoma, exit 132 (Route 16-Gig Harbor exit), which is quite a bit south of the center of Tacoma. Head for Route 16 (skipping the S 38th St exit); once in the curving exit ramp, keep your eyes peeled for the immediate first exit (1A); to Sprague Avenue. Once on S Sprague Ave at street level, you're heading north; pass lights at 19th and 12th (or 11th) until you come to multi-way light at 6th. Take the soft right into Division (not the sharp right into 6th). Follow Division to the light at North "K" Street and take a left. Wells Hall is the second building on the left.

From West of the Narrows Bridge

Take WA 16 east across the Narrows, and take exit 1B for Union Ave. Keep left at the fork; follow signs for University of Puget Sound. Turn left onto S Union Ave (at which point you'll be northbound.) Go about 1.5 mile and turn right into 6th Avenue. Follow 6th about a mile to a multi-way intersection; there take a soft left into Division Ave. Follow Division to North "K" Street, where you take a left. Wells Hall is the second building on the left.

For more information please contact:
Phil Katz - - 206 722 8228.
(you know what to do with the ZZZ)

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Last modified 09/15/15.